Well-controlled and well-characterized experimental measurements are obtained during the melting of a moderate-Prandtl-number material (n-eicosane) in a cylindrical enclosure heated from the side. The study aims to provide benchmark experimental measurements for validation of numerical codes. Experimental results in terms of measured temperatures and melt front locations are reported in both graphical and tabular forms. The melt front was captured photographically and its location ascertained using digital image processing techniques. To facilitate numerical validation exercises, a complete set of experimental results have been made available on a website for public access. An illustrative numerical comparison exercise was also undertaken using a multiblock finite volume method and the enthalpy method for a range of Stefan numbers. The experimental boundary conditions can be adequately represented with a constant and uniform side wall temperature, a constant and uniform lower surface temperature, and an adiabatic top wall. Very good agreement was obtained between the predictions and the experiment for Stefan numbers of up to 0.1807. The experimental results for a Stefan number of 0.0836 are recommended as being the most suitable for numerical benchmarking, since the boundary conditions are best controlled in this set of experiments.


Solid-Liquid Phase Change, Melting, Natural Convection, Paraffin, Phase Change Material

Date of this Version


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205. C. T. Merrill and S. V. Garimella, “Analysis and Prediction of Constriction Resistance between Coated Surfaces,” AIAA Journal of Thermophysics and Heat Transfer Vol. 20, pp. 346-348, 2006.